In honor of Mr. Jan Hermens
In World War II, The Stars and Stripes played an important role. With the help of mobile presses, the movements and actions of the armed forces were literally as was as figuratively followed at close range. As a result, the newspapers that were published in this period provide a truly interesting and realistic view of the allied invasion up to the surrendering of Germany and the liberation of Paris, Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.
These newspapers, published between June 7th 1944 and May 31st 1945, were collected by mister Jan Hermens. Mr. Hermens came one day, in the year 2004, to us and showed us his collection of newspapers. He was afraid this historical information could get lost and wanted to let it digitze. Immediatly we were fascinated about the story behind Mr. Hermens and his efforts for collecting all the newspages from D-Day untill V-Day that were published at the front lines. We digitized and 'cleaned' the pages, and put them together on an amazing DVD, in honor of the 60th Aniversary of the liberation of Europe. The DVD was first presented in 2004 by Major General Kenneth Bowra at the Overloon War Museum in the Netherlands.
Jan Hermens collected his first issues of The Stars and Stripes newspaper in September 1944, when he was only 15 years old. He lived in a small village then, called Hoensbroek, near Maastricht in the south of the Netherlands. At the time, Hoensbroek was being liberated from the German suppression by American troops. The Germans officially surrendered on May 8th 1945. Jan Hermens saw Amercian soldiers read The Stars & Stripes newspapers and saved all the newspapers American Soldiers threw away next to their tents.
After Jan Hermens retired from a 40-year career as an engineer at Philips Medical Systems in Eindhoven, he decided to do something with his (at that time small) collection of The Stars and Stripes newspapers. He devoted himself to complete his collection with every issue of The Stars and Stripes that was published from D-Day until V-Day, the liberation of Europe. And more specifically, those newspapers that were published the closest to the front lines. His search for missing issues led him to libraries, archives, museums and collectors worldwide and naturally The Stars and Stripes in the United States.
Unfortunatly Mr. Jan Hermens died on the 1st of April, 2018. In honor of his extraordinary efforts and devoting more than 10 years of his life collecting these newspapers we developed a new DVD, celebrating the 75th Aniversary of the liberation of Europe.